from the book Every Monday Matters: 52 Ways To Make A Difference by Matthew Emerzian and Kelly BozzaHELP THE HUNGRYThe second largest expense for a family is food. 1 in 4 people in a soup kitchen line is a child.ACTION STEPS1. Locate organizations near you that support the hungry. Find out what those orgainzations need and help provide it.2.Donate your time and volunteer at a food pantry/distribution center, a local soup kitchen, or a homeless shelter.3. Go through your pantry and gather up canned and dried foods to donate.4. Create or support a local canned food drive.5. Purchase and hand out fast-food gift cards to homeless people. Buy extra to have on hand for spontaneous giving.No matter where you live, there will be someone who is going hungry. This doesn’t just happen in the big cities. I live in a rural small town community of 700, and am well aware of children whose only decent meal of the day is the one they get at school. Fortunately we have a food pantry for our county and we have a collection box at our church. Our community often has food drives, either at school events or through different organizations like the Lions or the Boy Scouts. I donate food at every opportunity and am asking you to find an organiztion in your community that you can donate to as well. I used to run a homeless shelter for women and children and what was most needed were canned fruit, dry packaged meals, canned soup, baby food/formula, peanut butter, and cereals. Please consider adding some extra items to your shopping list and dropping them off today!Most of us don’t have to decide between buying food, paying rent, or purchasing medicine. But, sadly, millions do. You can be part of the solution. Once you start contributing, you will gain a new appreciation for the food you have on your table.

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